Insurance Broker Negligence Lawyers
People rely on the expert advice of insurance brokers or insurance agents when they purchase insurance coverage. When the advice of an insurance broker or agent falls below the standard of care that a competent broker is expected to provide, they can be found negligent and responsible for any damages which their clients suffer due to that negligence.
Insurance broker or insurance agent negligence can occur in almost any type of insurance policy including life insurance, long-term disability (LTD) insurance, or even commercial or residential property insurance.
Insurance Broker vs. Insurance Agent
While most people do not appreciate the difference, there is an important distinction between insurance brokers and insurance agents.
An insurance broker is an independent actor who is independent of any one insurance company. They are able to offer insurance products from many different insurance companies, often allowing for more choice between different insurance products for their clients.
An insurance agent is an agent of a specific insurance company. They offer insurance products from only the insurance company they represent. They offer less choice to their clients as they are only in the business of selling insurance products for one insurer, however they often know that insurance product at a much more detailed level than insurance brokers and can sometimes leverage this into getting a better deal for the client.
The two areas in which insurance brokers and insurance agents are most commonly negligent usually have to do with the application for insurance itself, or for failing to ensure there is adequate coverage in the insurance obtained.
When it comes to insurance applications, people seeking insurance usually must provide written answers to questions posed to them by insurance companies along with forms to fill out. Usually, these questions are given to people by an insurance broker. Insurance companies evaluate people for insurance based on the answers to these questions. Most people do not understand the nuances of these questions and forms and insurance brokers have a duty to make sure the answers given are accurate and that the forms are filled out correctly.
If an answer is given that is incorrect or a form is not filled out correctly, an insurance company may deny your insurance claim. If incorrect answers are given or forms are filled out incorrectly due to the negligence of an insurance broker
Insurance brokers have a strong duty of care to their clients to make sure that any insurance contracts they help their client’s get include insurance coverage that is appropriate for that client’s specific circumstances.
Insurance brokers need to make sure they investigate in detail the insurance needs of people or companies for whom they help get insurance. Every person or business has different insurance needs and rely on insurance brokers to make sure those insurance needs are met. If a insurance broker’s investigation is not thorough enough, or if an insurance broker fails to investigate a client’s specific insurance needs at all, then they are not meeting the standard of care required under law.
Other Types of Insurance Broker or Insurance Agent Negligence
There are other types of negligence claims often brought against insurance brokers and insurances agents. These include:
- Failure to provide the insurance company with accurate information
- Failure to adequately explain the policy coverage
- Failure to adequately explain the policy exclusions
- Failure to notify the insured of coverage issues
- Representing they are experts in areas of insurance where they have no experience
Insurance Broker or Agent Negligence & Timelines
Insurance broker or insurance agent negligence are very complex areas of insurance law that requires the analysis of an experienced insurance denial lawyer. There are timelines in which you have to act if you want compensation for insurance broker negligence. Failure to act within these timelines can be a complete defence to any claim you may have, so it is important for you to act quickly.
If you believe your insurance broker was negligent in the advice they provided you and you suffered a loss because of it, call the lawyers at Taylor & Blair right away.